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Entertainment, Food & Beverage

4th time's the charm for JJ

A jubilant JJ Lin dedicated his Best Mandarin Male Singer prize to his late grandmother at the Golden Melody Awards, held in Taipei on Saturday night.
The Straits Times - June 30, 2014
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4th time's the charm for JJ JUMPING FOR JOY: Singaporean singer-songwriter JJ Lin won the Best Mandarin Male Singer award at the 25th Golden Melody Awards in Taipei on Saturday, beating rivals Wakin Chau, Chang Chen-yue, Soft Lipa and Li Ronghao.PHOTO: AFP

A jubilant JJ Lin dedicated his Best Mandarin Male Singer prize to his late grandmother at the Golden Melody Awards, held in Taipei on Saturday night.

While accepting his award, the Singaporean singer-songwriter said: "I want to give this to granny. She taught me (that) family is worth protecting."

He won the award, his first in the category, after being nominated for it four times. His grandmother died last year.

"I want to thank my parents for giving me musical talents... I want to thank my fans," he added.

The win - for his 10th studio album, Stories Untold - came 10 years after he won the Best New Artist prize at the same awards, Taiwan's version of America's Grammys.

"Yes! So this is how it feels to win the Best Male Singer award!" the 33-year-old said after ascending the stage at the Taipei Arena.

He saw off veteran Hong Kong singer Wakin Chau; Taiwan's aboriginal musician, Chang Chen-yue; rapper Soft Lipa and China's Li Ronghao.

Also taking top honours was Malaysian singer-producer Penny Tai, who was crowned Best Mandarin Female Singer for her album, Unexpected.

"I am very lucky as I didn't have any formal musical training. I couldn't have got this far today without the help of many people," AFP quoted Tai, who also won on her fourth nomination for the award, as saying.

She beat Singapore's Tanya Chua, who has a record three titles in the category; Hong Kong's Denise Ho and Taiwan's Faith Yang and Jia Jia.

Tai, 36, also bagged the Best Producer award for Je T'embrasse, the first album she produced for Chinese singer Koala Liu.

She thanked her "future husband" and boyfriend of five years, Sidney Lu, who is not in show business. "I definitely have marriage plans for this year... This is what I will do this year when I take a break," she said.

Li, 28, walked away with the Best New Artist award for his first album, Model, which was named for a leading five nominations.

The Best Album of the Year accolade went to Chang for the album Ayal Komod, which is his aboriginal name.

"There were so many people who supported me in making this album and I can repay them only by making more efforts in life and in writing music," said Chang, according to AFP.

Veteran Taiwanese producer and singer Jonathan Lee's song and album, Hill, took awards for Best Song of the Year, Best Lyricist and Best Album Packaging.

A touching moment came when veteran TV host Chang Hsiao-yen accepted a special contribution award bestowed on her music-producer husband, Peng Kuo-hua, who died of liver cancer in 2002.

Choking with emotion, Chang, who took a hiatus from work following his death, said: "My happiest times were spent being Mrs Peng."

Singers, songwriters and composers from Taiwan, China, Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia competed in more than 20 categories at the 25th annual ceremony, which featured a performance by JJ Lin and American singer Jason Mraz.

Taiwanese pop diva Jolin Tsai, known for her hit, See My 72 Changes, also rocked the audience, presenting a breathtaking series of songs with 72 dancers.


Cheers at your cosy neighbourhood bar